Rural Intelligence: The Online Magazine for Eastern New York, Western Connecticut and the Southern Berkshires
Tuesday, October 17, 2017
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Links to stories concerning our region in other media:

Architectural Digest
The New Jacob’s Pillow Performing Arts Studio Is a Study in Cutting-Edge Design

At the New England HQ of a world-famous dance festival, a gorgeous high-tech building works hard to blend in.

Artnet News
Jasper Johns Plans to Turn His CT Home and Studio Into Artists’ Retreat

Up to two dozen artists will get live-work spaces where they can devote themselves to their work.

The New York Times
Restoring Eleanor Roosevelt’s Childhood Home on the Hudson

New owner Van Lamprou plans to use the space to encourage civic engagement.

Atlas Obscura
Santarella: A Storybook Estate in Lee, Massachusetts

Plan your event at this Southern Berkshire estate featuring Sir Henry Hudson Kitson’s “Gingerbread House.”

The New York Times
Mary Stuart Masterson, Actress and Beekeeper

Five years ago, Masterson and her family traded in city life for a small town in Upstate NY.

The Wall Street Journal
The Berkshires Town That’s Becoming a Cultural Hub

This summer, North Adams welcomes a series of cutting-edge art and hospitality projects—and that’s only the beginning.

The New York Times
Walking Over the Hudson: Lofty Valley Views Where Trains Once Rumbled

The longest elevated pedestrian bridge in the world is Poughkeepsie, N.Y.‘s Walkway Over the Hudson State Historic Park.

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The Porchlight: A New Bright Spot Opens In Sharon, CT

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A sophisticated wine and food venue is fulfilling the dreams of former New Yorkers Brian and Tracey Abut, whose global travels to wine-producing regions inspired them to open a wine bar and call it The Porchlight. CB Wismar made a visit and tells us the wine list, with wines from all over the world as well as the U.S., are priced well within reason. And though it’s not a full-course dinner restaurant, the menu is eclectic, tasty and a touch whimsical (franks in a blanket of puff pastry, for example). Open just a month, business has been brisk.

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Local Labyrinths Are Welcome Pathways To Inner Peace

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Did you know there are labyrinths hidden all over the RI region? These mesmerizing structures can be found at meditation and yoga centers, retreats and churches, and even village parks. They aren’t mazes; a labyrinth has one path designed to guide you within to the physical and existential center. Jamie Larson took the long, strange trip inward to explore our local labyrinths. Whatever your beliefs, walking one is a supremely relaxing and introspective thing to do.

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Bring the entire family, including your horses, to these expansive properties fit for today’s equestrian. Both horse and rider will love the acres of lush pastureland, wooded trails and roomy barns of these estates. One horse farm even boasts a heated riding ring for enjoyable, year-round exercise.

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Art makers of all stripes are warmly welcomed in our region, and there are just as many stylish gallery spaces in which to view their work. This weekend, we visited two of them during opening receptions for new exhibits — Schantz Galleries in Stockbridge and MASS MoCA in North Adams.

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Creamy cannellini beans are among Lisa Fielding’s list of comfort foods, whether the beans are served as part of a light salad or in a hearty wintry soup. Here, she creates a recipe that’s as sophisticated as a cassoulet, but without the same amount of preparation and ingredients.

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The next month offers a host of dining destinations and food-oriented activities, including a book signing by Amanda Glover (a.k.a. AmandaBakes); another Food for Thought dinner with an author at Hancock Shaker Village; Tousey Winery’s Halloween vintage release party, and Hudson Valley Restaurant Week.

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Hillsdale, New York’s renaissance continues. Designer Carrie Chen has opened Casana T House — fragrant teas and goodies — and Casana Designs, a retail space devoted to fine cashmere scarves and other accessories. Both spaces bring a welcoming, decidedly global aesthetic to a quintessential small town.

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If you’ve enjoyed yourself at a fundraising gala at Jacob’s Pillow, Shakespeare & Company or The Mahaiwe, party planner Amy Rudnick was part of the reason why. The event-producing powerhouse and former planner for the Museum of Natural History spends her summers helping local nonprofits thrive.

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Instant Intelligence

For even more information about upcoming events, check out our Dining, Music & Dance, Visual Arts, Shopping, Books, Theater, Movies, and Save the Date sections. Please submit your own event to

Oct. 19, Norfolk Infinity Hall Kathy Mattea’s “The Acoustic Living Room” – stories and songs also featuring Bill Cooley. Kathy presents her most recent material alongside her Top 20 radio hits. 8 p.m.

Oct. 19–21, Great Barrington McTeigue & McClelland Diamond and Estate Jewelry Buying Event: There will be a Gemologist available to determine the value of gems and jewelry. Appointments suggested.

Oct. 20, Annandale-on-Hudson Bard College Award-winning memoirist and critic Daniel Mendelsohn will discuss his new novel, An Odyssey, with poet and memoirist Nick Flynn, answer questions and sign copies. 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 20–22, Kent Gilmore Girls Fan Fest Enjoy screenings of special episodes, cake tastings, workshops, lectures, panels with actors and crew, trivia, hikes, seasonal activities and more. 

Oct. 20 & 21 and 27 & 28, Germantown Clermont Legends by Candlelight Ghost Tours: a tour of the mansion decorated as it was for Halloween in 1921. The house is filled with ghosts from the Livingston family’s past — separated lovers, servants, pirates and more will be uncovered. Some ghosts are scary and some are funny, but all of them are true stories. 6–9 p.m.

Oct. 20 & 21 and 27 & 28, Stockbridge Naumkeag Haunted House: more scares, bigger haunts and new surprises throughout the mansion and on a new, frightening path through the gardens. 6:30–8:30 p.m.

Oct. 21, New Preston Dog Days A village-wide fete devoted to the love of dogs, with glam shots taken at DK Schulman, a book signing with Susanna Salk at Pergola, limited edition items for sale, and a portion of proceeds donated to Brass City Rescue Alliance and Little Guild of St. Francis.

Oct. 21, Millerton Rock Steady Farm Fall Farm Party: Enjoy a hike, live bluegrass from The Hayrollers, rap duo Katani and more, plus a silent auction and chili. BYO wine and beer. 4 p.m.

Oct. 21, Rhinebeck Oblong Books & Music Celebrate the launch of Rhinebeck photographer Francesco Mastalia’s new book, Yoga: The Secret of Life, a photo-documentary that explores the experiences of 108 of today’s leading practitioners. 6 p.m. 

Oct. 21, Great Barrington Close Encounters With Music The season opens with The Titans: Schumann & Brahms Piano Quintets performed by pianist Soyeon Kate Lee, violinists Irina Muresanu & Peter Zazofsky, violist Michael Strauss & cellist Yehuda Hanani. Mahaiwe, 6 p.m.

Oct. 21, Great Barrington Simon’s Rock A screening of chapters from the documentary Girl Rising and a conversation with Girl Rising CEO Christina Lowry and Marah Koprowski. 6 p.m. Read more about Christina Lowry and Girl Rising in our Rural We. 

Oct. 21, Pittsfield Colonial Theatre Emmy Award-nominated actress/comedian and SNL alum Janeane Garofalo has appeared in the films The Truth About Cats and Dogs, Wet Hot American Summer, Reality Bites and more. 8 p.m.

Oct. 21 & 22, Rhinebeck New York State Sheep & Wool Festival Pet the animals, take part in a workshop, enter a contest, watch a sheep-shearing demo, meet authors, sip wine, eat & shop. Dutchess County Fairgrounds, Sat. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. & Sun. 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

Oct. 22, Pittsfield Berkshire Humane’s Birthday Bash Berkshire Humane Society celebrates 25 years with Steve Caporizzo, News10 meteorologist & host of Pet Connection. Enjoy brunch by SoMa, cocktails, a silent auction & a special presentation. Colonial Theatre, 12–3 p.m.

Oct. 22, Great Barrington Hevreh of Southern Berkshire Fourth Annual BerkshireSPEAKS: Presentations by Berkshire visionaries and trendsetters including Michelle Chappell, Homer “Skip” Meade, Andrew Morehouse, Norton Owen and Ananda Timpane. 1:30 p.m.

Oct. 22, Lenox Lenox Library The Distinguished Lecture Series presents Jeffrey Diamond, who will give the talk “Producing Barbara Walters and Other Delights of the Television Trade.” 4 p.m.

Oct. 22-29, Chatham FilmColumbia This year’s event will honor Frank Langella, and will include a cocktail party kickoff with the actor, as well as film screenings, parties, a screenwriting panel and more. 

Oct. 27, Claverack Claverack Library Songs and Stories of the Strange and Macabre: The NiverMoores will perform delightfully depressing songs of hard living and death. Singer/songwriter Abby Lappen will present folk songs to haunt and mesmerize. Storytellers will spin tales of suspense and delight. 7 p.m.

Oct. 28, Philmont Local 111 Brunch for Habitat, featuring guest speaker Danitia Smith, author of the new novel The Honeymoon. 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Oct. 28, Wassaic The Wassaic Project From 3-5 p.m., kids can enjoy hay rides, a costume contest, face painting, a haunted house on the porch & more. An adult Haunted Mill runs from 5-9 p.m., and will be followed by a Monster’s Ball at the Lantern at 9 p.m.

Oct. 28, Pittsfield Shire City Sanctuary Creatures Of The Deep: Berkshire Shenanigans presents Halloween under the deep sea with DJ BFG, belly dancing and acro-yoga performances, tarot card readings and more. 8 p.m.

Oct. 29, Washington WAA Art Patrons Party Celebrate the Washington Art Association & Gallery’s 65th anniversary, with cocktails and jazz pianist David Grausman. Grace Mayflower, 4–6 p.m.

For even more information about upcoming events, check out our:
Dining Intelligence (Listings of Food and Drink Events & Restaurant Features)
Music & Dance Listings
Visual Arts Listings
Local Shopping Listings
Books Listings
Theater Listings
Local Movies Listings
Save the Date Listings
Please submit your own event to